Interstate preview

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Well Punters, you are in for a special treat this week!

We are lucky enough to have the one and only Mick Sharkie helping us out with an interstate preview. For those who don’t know Mick, he is one of the very best form analysts in Australia and is based in Melbourne. You can spot him on TVN programs GET ON and Racing Review. He also has a great website with many options for punters to get the latest mail. You may also have seen him celebrating over the Melbourne carnival as he has a share in Lucas Cranach and had a hand in getting that horse and Mawingo to our shores.

Mick’s website is


I am wrapped that Mick has provided his analysis of a couple of the interstate races and is prepared to help us out with some mail from his ‘home turf’. I’m sure you will enjoy the read, and you can bet he will be around the money!

**The track is in a good condition, but there is a 1-5 ml predicted Saturday. Best to check track conditions in the morning but Flemington is a terrific track and it should come up pretty good as it always does.

Rail is out 3m and current rating is Dead.



RACE 3 (1.10pm) 1600m 3yo Hcp
Expected Pace – Moderate (leaders should be favoured)
Gee I would be all over NO. 2 HOT LOVER with a bit more speed in this race and the only thing stopping me from tipping him as a best bet is the lack of pace – based on his pattern to date he will sit in the second half of the field, so he is a slight risk in a slowly run race. The horse just dominated a similar field here as expected a fortnight ago, he is a serious racehorse and I’d expect him to race to stakes level during spring. He came from behind Cash Bound and Xavi in a race that was only run at a moderate tempo and his closing sections were the best of any winner on the program – good horse, jockey and pace the only worry this week. NO. 4 THE NEW BOY also gets a nice run on speed but he is a bit of a weak horse when it comes to the business end of his races. He’ll run well but on recent efforts he looks pretty one-paced and I’d be inclined to think a more dynamic horse will have his measure again this week. NO. 5 XAVI gets a good run on speed again this week but that might not be enough to hold off Hot Lover. He sat 3-wide on speed in his last run which wasn’t ideal, but the winner did as well – it’s hard to really make excuses for the defeat but he gets the chance to turn the tables if he can really drop anchor and control the race. Now here is a roughie for you – NO. 9 SPARKS BURN – he was confidently specked in at odds at Warrnambool last start but settled a mile off the speed before flying to the post. This is his first attempt at 1600m and he deserves thought on times alone from that last run.
2, 4, 5, 9
CONFIDENCE LEVEL 90% (top rater is a very smart horse)
BETTING ADVICE – I’d be super keen on Hot Lover with better speed, but the map tempers that enthusiasm somewhat. Given an even tempo I still think he will win – back him accordingly


RACE 4 (1.45pm) 2000m Open Hcp
Expected Pace – Genuine (every runner will get its chance)
A good general rule of thumb to use for this track and trip is to stick to horses that will settle in the first four or five in running – you would be amazed by how many winners lob in that section of the field at 2000m here. The Gelagotis boys have shown a lot of faith in 3kg apprentice Jake Duffy with a booking on NO. 9 MODULE – the lads like a punt! Module was very, very unlucky in the Warrnambool Cup when he was nearly put the inside rail in the straight by another runner when making strong ground, prior to that he was totally luckless at this track and trip. He was caught 3 and 4 wide from the start in that race, pushed forward from the 1000m and was outside the leader and a sitting duck at the 400m – regardless, he kept kicking strongly and beat all but Playwright and Chasse. I really like him this week, Duffy is a slight worry but heck he would have to slaughter it from barrier 3 – he really should be sitting first 5 with cover. NO. 13 NOBLE PARK will be sitting third on my map, stalking Playwright and Turnitup, and from there he will get first crack at the leaders in the straight. He’s got two key factors in his favour this week, a weight drop and a firmer track, although he has slow and heavy form his best figures have come on dead ground. NO. 5 ELUSIVE KING is ready to really step up now after two good fitness building runs. Gate 5 allows Currie to settle better than midfield and from there he gets every chance to rediscover his superb form from late last year around this distance. NO. 1 PLAYWRIGHT comes across with Turnitup and from there he should be able to lead or hand up to that runner. I’m just banking on some of these to finish over him from the 200m, he’ll stick strongly though and I can’t get him any longer than $8 on my figures.
9, 13, 5, 1
CONFIDENCE LEVEL 90% (top pick gets the favours & hopefully the ride!)

BETTING ADVICE – I’ll be having a good bet on Module each-way, I can’t see him missing the place



**A great article by Mick and as you would have seen in ‘The Punt’ article I have also made HOT LOVER as one of the day’s best bets. Flemington really suits and he looks like a very promising type.